A murder mystery set in England. This national bestseller is a "murder she wrote" kind of book involving a museum, a dysfunctional family and a set of wacky museum workers. Two bodies show up early on mimicking historical murders portrayed in the museum's "murder room." A third attempt is made. You will not guess whodunnit.
Neither the mystery nor the detective present James's followers with anything truly new in her latest Adam Dalgliesh novel (after 2001's Death in Holy Orders), which opens, like other recent books in the series, with an extended portrayal of an aging institution whose survival is threatened by one person, who rapidly becomes the focus of resentment and hostility. Neville Dupayne, a trustee of the Dupayne Museum, a small, private institution devoted to England between the world wars, plans to veto its continuing operation. After many pages of background on the museum's employees, volunteers and others who would be affected by the trustee's unpopular decision, Neville meets his end in a manner paralleling a notorious historical murder exhibited in the museum's "Murder Room." MI5's interest in one of the people connected with the crime leads to Commander Dalgleish and his team taking on the case.
OurMissBooks - reviewed The Murder Room (Adam Dalgliesh, Bk 12) on
P.D. James is one of my favorite mystery authors and Adam Dalgliesh is an excellent detective. I've never been to England but love stories that take place there, so that's part of the appeal for me. The characters are well drawn and interesting, and the mystery compelling until the end. (I rarely guess whodunnit!) I recommend it.
Another masterful work of psychologial intricacy by P.D. James. Adam Dalglish is in the throes of making a decision about his love life and at the same time is searching for a murderer who has committed two murders in the Dupayne Museum and is destined to kill again.
When someone says 'murder mystery' to me, this is pretty much exactly what I think of. Very much within the classic tropes of the genre, but set in contemporary London, in this book James' police inspector, Dalgliesh, is assigned to investigate a murder that occured on the grounds of a small and obscure museum. The museum was in danger of closing - and the dead man was in favor of that closure, against his siblings' wishes. But did his siblings care strongly enough to kill him? Or was there another person with motivation - someone from the museum's small staff of odd and peculiar characters? Or someone from the deceased's private life as a psychologist?
When someone else turns up dead, things begin to seem more and more complex...
I thought the book was rather long, for its content, but reasonably well-done.
This is NOT one of the Christian mysteries I usually read. It was well written and free from distracting abusive language. The plot was engaging, although some of the aspects were abhorrent. I was not able to solve the mystery for certain before it was revealed.
I feel somewhat sorry for Maggie M. and her experience (see her review), but only because I had the same experience. After reading about 60-70 pages of this book, I began to wonder if P.D. Jones was really the writer.
Then, after P.J. Jones had set the stage by describing all the characters, the pace immediately picked up and it was a P.D. James murder-mystery novel again. After two or three sittings I realized I was almost two-thirds of the way through the 400 page book. There are three victims in the book, in fact the book sections are divided by 'victims.' Ms. James threw me a loop as to her third victim, and the novel had an interesting resolution.
I have two more books to read in the Adam Dalgliesh series, and then (Alas!) its over.